Thursday, May 29, 2008

Rumi ...

If you are with everyone without Me
You are with none

If you are with nobody but with Me
You are with everyone

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

The Cure And Sickness Of Love ...

One afternoon while in a state of sujud
I asked my Merciful God
"Why the world hereafter have You made ???
Is this clay world not suffice for Your Justice ???
Would not Your Glory manifest at this place ???"
I closed my eyes as I felt the reply
I smiled ad I learnt the secrets of Love
This love brings sense to men of craze
And captures the sense of those wise
It sures those sickened like "Al-Busiri"
And makes heart-sick like 'Lahori'
I am not of those deserving to elaborate it
A dark soul I am, no better than a hypocrite
Yet love is what makes me before Him bow
And Mustafa is the centre of Cosmos of Love
Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam
Love breaks the knots of Logic and Reason
And ties another hundred knots on the heart
O Tasbih !!! I almost forgot about the reply
This is how love makes your senses fly
Came the reply,
"This world is too narrow and small
For the Beloved's greatness to call
That "Wrapped One" is the leader for all times
'BC' and 'AD' cannot contain his greatness
There should come a single day and place
When every man born shall see his radiant face
He will march with humanity behind him
That day Creation shall reach a point carrying 'Al Hamd'
A question shall be asked "Who is that"
The reply will come
"I am Muhammad"

Among the marvels of modern technology is also the ability to track the missed calls which were made by our friends and foes and the likes 

We do not get a good nights sleep 

Unless we have returned the calls of those who matter

We don't let any call go unanswered as long as we know that it matters 

Don't we ???

But how about the calls of "hay-yaa al-as-salaah and hay-yaa al-al falah" 

Made from the neighbourhood house of our Master  
The Almighty Allah ??? 

Those calls are made five times a day 

And many a times they all go unanswered

We do not either respond !!! 

Nor do we respect these missed calls 

Do they matter ???

Everybody can tell, if these really matter 

Maybe not today or tomorrow

But surely in the Hereafter 

Let us look at ourselves 

Can we afford to let these calls of the muezzin be missed 
Day after day after day

The call from our 

And the 
Ultimate Master 

Just think about it 

Next time one hears this call 

Just ask yourself how good a nights sleep can I have 
By missing those calls from the house of Allah

Think about it

The answer may come from the inner heart

Monday, May 26, 2008

Rumi ...

Whether you are fast or slow
Eventually you will find what you are seeking
Always devote yourself whole heartedly to your search
Even though you may limp or be bent double
Do not abandon your search,
But drag yourself towards it

I'll send one prayer now

To send love and heal the hearts of people who hate
If only one song could silence hate
And end all the wars before it is too late

If a cold mind could begin to feel
Then the fear in our world has a chance to heal

I send it now to heal the hearts of people who hate
And then we'd all be loved, we'd all be blessed, we'd all feel peace

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Habib Ali al Jifri ...

It is difficult for people who are angry to listen to a message 
Our message is for people of understanding 
Who live amongst the angry masses

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Albert Einstein ...

Imagination is more important than knowledge 
For knowledge is limited 
Whereas imagination embraces the entire world 
Stimulating progress 
Giving birth to evolution

Sunday, May 18, 2008

The Fortune Teller ... Nizar Qabbani

She sat with fear in her eyes
Contemplating the upturned cup

She said 
"Do not be sad, my son
You are destined to fall in love"

My son
Who sacrifices himself for his beloved
Is a martyr

For long have I studied fortune-telling
But never have I read a cup similar to yours
For long have I studied fortune-telling
But never have I seen sorrows similar to yours

You are predestined to sail forever
Sail-less, on the sea of love
Your life is forever destined
To be a book of tears
And be imprisoned
Between water and fire

But despite all its pains
Despite the sadness

That is with us day and night
Despite the wind
The rainy weather
And the cyclone

It is love, my son
That will be forever the best of fates

There is a woman in your life, my son
Her eyes are so beautiful
Glory to God
Her mouth and her laughter
Are full of roses and melodies
And her gypsy and crazy love of life
Travels the world

The woman you love
May be your whole world

But your sky will be rain-filled
Your road blocked

Blocked, my son
Your beloved, my son, is sleeping
In a guarded palace

He who approaches her garden wall
Who enters her room
And who proposes to her
Or tries to unite her plaits
Will cause her to be lost, my son 


You will seek her everywhere, my son
You will ask the waves of the sea about her
You will ask the shores of the seas
You will travel the oceans
And your tears will flow like a river
And at the close of your life
You will find that since your beloved
Has no land 

No home 
No address
You have been pursuing only a trace of smoke
How difficult it is, my son
To love a woman
Who has neither land

Nor home

On Entering The Sea ... Nizar Qabbani

Love happened at last
And we entered God's paradise
Under the skin of the water
Like fish
We saw the precious pearls of the sea
And were amazed
Love happened at last
Without intimidation

With symmetry of wish
So I gave
And you gave
And we were fair
It happened with marvelous ease
Like writing with jasmine water
Like a spring flowing from the ground

Forgiveness ... Pearls Of Wisdom ...

"I can forgive but I cannot forget"  is only one way of saying  "I will not forgive"

 Forgiveness aught to be like a canceled note ... 
Torn into two, and burned up ... 
So that it never can be shown against one ...

The glory of Islam is to conquer by forgiveness ...

Forgiveness does not change the past ... But it does change the future ...

Life is an adventure in forgiveness  

You are never so strong as when you forgive ...

He who cannot forgive others

Breaks the bridge over which he must pass himself 
For every man has the need to be forgiven ...

As long as you don't forgive

Who and whatever will occupy rent free space in your mind ...

To err is human ... To forgive is divine ...

Forgive all who have offended you ... Not for them but for yourself ...

Rumi ...

This being human is a guest house
Every morning a new arrival
A joy

A depression
A meanness
Some momentary awareness comes
As an unexpected visitor
Welcome and entertain them all
Even if they are a crowd of sorrows
Who violently sweep your house
Empty of its furniture
Still treat each guest honorably
He may be clearing you out for some new delight
The dark thought 

The shame 
The malice
Meet them at the door laughing
And invite them in
Be grateful for whoever comes
Because each has been sent
As a guide from beyond

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Rumi ...

Love has nothing to do with the five senses and the six directions 
Its goal is only to experience the attraction exerted by the Beloved
Afterwards, perhaps, permission will come from God
The secrets that ought to be told with an eloquence nearer to the understanding 
That these subtle confusing allusions
The secret is partner with none but the knower of the secret
In the skeptic's ear the secret is no secret at all

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Stay in so much light ... That you reflect it to all you meet ...

Do not be depressed ... There is work to do ... There is light to make ...

Do not be depressed ... Be aware ... Be awake ... Be resistant ... Be your ancestors ... Be your future ... Be alive ... Be alive ...

Think critically ... Ask the uncomfortable questions ... Listen to some music that warms your soul ... Share your smiles ...

Love life ... Each time you think you got yourself a dope plan ... Here comes the universe to slow your roll ...

Spring is here
I wish for you re-birth
Sap of life
Colour of bloom

Life is this, dear reader 
The inhalation and exhalation of the breath
One passes
Another enters



Martin Luther King Jr ...

[Delivered in Washington, DC, on August 28, 1963]

Monday, May 12, 2008

If the world is counted valuable 
Surely the house of God's rewards is higher and more worthy 

If bodies were created for death 
Surely being killed with swords in the way of God is a more honorable death 

If the share of daily sustenance 
Of each creature is provided by the Creator 
Surely it is not decent for man to be greedy 
For gaining and eating too much 

If wealth is amassed for one day to be left 
Then why does a free man become such a miser 
On something he has to leave ???

Bihar al-Anwar ...

People are slaves to the world 
And as long as they live favorable and comfortable lives 
They are loyal to religious principles 

At hard times 
The times of trials 
True religious people are scarce

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

I Love Her ... By Jafar Alam

I love her
Like peanut butter loves jelly
But I’m not talking about food
Cause only a glutton finds sweetness in the belly

Her beauty leaves me breathless
As she radiates magnificence
It’s a shame many don’t know
That pride is ignorance

And ignorance is bliss

And they know this

And that’s why they take pride in not knowing
We’re not growing
And I’m just aimlessly flowing
Until I see her
And on my sleeve
My heart 

Starts showing

And when I feel chills
And I begin st-st-stutter
She wraps her arms around me
and gives me, the lovers cover
And if they stabbed a million times
I would only bleed more reasons to love her
I looked her in her eyes, and said:
“How can u love me so much
And expect me to believe that it’s true ???”
She said:
“This life that I live isn’t for me, it’s for you
And He gave me gray skies
So that yours could be blue”

And though she makes me so mad at times
Makes me wanna curse
But I hold back
And I don’t wanna ruin this verse
Cause in my yester years
She quenched my thirst

They say:

“Forget her and everyone else, and just follow us.
Aim high, make all your goals lateral”

But I had nothing without her
So I put my soul up as collateral

Shouldn’t surprise you
Cause that’s what lies do

And when my soul had turned into a bird
That found the right spot for its nest
That’s the day I realized
That she would be my hearts strongest weakness

Because she carried me, where no one carries anyone
And she fed me from the fruit of her heart
That which no one feeds anyone

And she will live forever incomparable
Because Beauty and Infinity are inseparable

And if I were to die, and be buried under the earth
I would rise on the 23rd hour
Just to prove to her
That I couldn’t live a day without her

Held so close in life and love
As destiny takes control
She gave me a body
To encapsulate my soul
This poem is about her
And no other
The one responsible for my physical being 

My mother

[Dedicated to my special lady] 

[And to my brother Aamir, who recently lost his mother ... 
She will live forever in the hearts of those who knew her ... 
Allah yarhama ]

Tuesday, May 6, 2008


One of the first things that most people think about when preparing for or thinking about marriage, are the characteristics or qualities of the person they would like to marry ...

Some people think about how they want their potential husband or wife to look ... Perhaps they think about such things as hair and skin colour ... 
Some men may look for a wife who is an excellent cook ... 
And some women may look for a husband who is very religious ...

Nonetheless, most people, Muslims included, seem to go to great lengths to make elaborate lists, either on paper or in their minds, about all the things they want or expect from their potential husband or wife ... 

And while this is good and perhaps a very necessary part of the marriage search, few people ever sit down, and with the same purposefulness and care, enumerate their own qualities and characteristics or think about whether they, themselves, are the kind of people that someone else with just as high expectations or ideals would want to marry ...

Think outside of yourself for a moment ...

If you were someone else, would you marry you ??? 

I don't mean you, as you would like to see yourself weeks, months or even years from now ... Nor do I mean you as you imagine yourself after you have had a chance to change a few of your bad habits, improve your character, fix yourself up, or you after you begin to practice your religion more seriously ... 

I mean you, as you are TODAY ...

I believe that if some people were to be completely honest with themselves, they would have to admit that they, themselves, do not possess the kind of qualities or characteristics they would want in a husband or wife ...

Perhaps we all know of someone like this ... 
Possibly a relative ...
A best friend ...
Or maybe this person is YOU ... 

For two people who are experienced at it, marriage, at best, can be difficult ... 
It requires patience, diplomacy, perseverance, flexibility, wisdom, and endurance, just to name a few things ...

Does this mean that if someone does not possess ALL of these qualities they should not get married ??? 

No ... 

I don't mean to say this ... 

However, there are people that I have come across that are in a desperate race to get married; while at the same time they possess characteristics of selfishness, stubbornness, inflexibility, insensitivity, and ingratitude. 

They are overly critical of other people while at the same time they have difficulty accepting criticism of themselves ... 

And they have poor communication skills ... 

On top of all of that, they may be in denial and won't face up to the fact that they have a *few* personality defects to iron out before getting married ... 

Do any of these characteristics describe you or someone you know that is looking for a wife or a husband ??? 

Has anyone ever told YOU that you possess any of these characteristics ???

Marriage is so serious an affair that I would dare say that if someone looking to get married possesses some or all of these qualities, they may be headed for big trouble ... 

Or, should I say anyone that marries a person like this might be in very big trouble ??? 

The question then becomes ... 

Does a person who possesses these kinds of shortcomings have to wait years before getting married ??? 

I would say the answer is NO ... 
Someone like this doesn't have to wait years to get married ...

Allah says in the Quran that He will never change the condition of a people until they first change what is inside of them ... 

This ayah offers hope ... Hope of a new tomorrow ... 

Isn't that what most people want ??? 

They want to know that whatever difficulties they are facing today, a change is on the horizon for tomorrow ... 

However, it does not only offer hope ... 
It offers hope on a condition ... 
That condition is that we have to take the first step to recognize that we have a problem and then do something about it ... 

Can a man who is a drunk
Ever become sober unless he recognizes that he has a problem ??? 

And can a man that is insensitive, inflexible, stubborn, ungrateful, rigid, and selfish ever be a good husband ???

Someone who is in denial about their faults will never be able to change their negative pattern of behavior until they first recognize and ADMIT that they have a problem ...

Once you can admit that you have a problem, the next step is to begin working diligently and consistently on your problem or negative characteristics ...

The key words here are working diligently AND consistently ... 

As any doctor will tell you, a patient has to be diligent and consistent about taking their medicine in order to see good results ... 

Couple this prescription that Allah gives us in the Quran with prayer and strong faith ... InshaAllah, you can overcome any problem ...

If after taking a good long, honest look at yourself in the mirror you cannot honestly say that you would make a good husband or wife in your present condition, then before you pick up the pen to enumerate a list of all the fine qualities you are looking for in a wife or husband, instead, why not list some of the qualities that you need to work on, and then embark on a program to change these bad qualities so that someday soon when Allah does bless you with a good wife or husband you will be worthy of such a person ???

After all, isn't the divorce rate high enough already ???

Friday, May 2, 2008

The shell of a seed protects its kernel 
So that it may have an opportunity to gestate and grow ... 

So too thoughts need to gestate and grow ... 

In this manner we can perhaps create and shape 
An inner world of depth and texture 
Arising from a struggle to acquire real understanding ... 
To truly expand and deepen the boundaries of knowledge ... 
To perceive not just form ...
But meaning ...
Inner content ...

We become the sculptor rather than the sculpture ... 
The shaper rather than the shaped ...
Creating and modifying our own internal configuration 
Rather than allowing the external world to impose a configuration on us ...

Then there arises some possibility of acting in the 
And apparent chaos of the external world 
With a measure of thoughtfulness and depth ... 
With a considered consciousness devoid of haste and maladroitness ... 

We can perhaps bring inner resources (nurtured to capacity) 
To bear on the complexity of life 
And bring a level of steadiness to the self 
And thereby possible benefit to others

“There is no worthwhile movement (or action) whatsoever 
But that you need understanding for it” - (Imam Ali)

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Rabbi al Awwal Reflections ...

For years I was lost
Wandering around without any idea of why I am here

Or what I was supposed to do
And when I would hear your name
It was only because everyone from a certain place 
Or faith seemed to have that name
The mechanic
The new kid at school 
Or a world famous famous boxer
I even met someone who had your name as his first AND last name …
"What's your name ???" I asked the Iranian mechanic
"And what's your last name ???"
"So you have the same first name and last name ???"
"Yes. Muhammad Muhammad"
I couldn't even begin to understand why these Desi's, Arabs, Africans
Would never get tired of naming their children after you
If I ever asked one of them 
"So what did you name your newborn son ???"
"Oh" I would think
"That's original"

I couldn't, for the life of me
Understand why 5 brothers from the same family and their father
Would all keep your name
As their official first names
And use their middle names
To tell each other apart
When it came to daily use
They were Zafar, Azhar, or Saeed
But when their proudest moments came
And it came time for their name to be printed 
Onto their degrees and awards
Your name would appear there first
When I called my childhood playmate to come out
And asked his mother
"Can I talk to Mo please ???"
The woman who usually never said much 
And always seemed so modest said
"Don’t call him Mo. His name is Muhammad"

When I read and learned a bit more
I came to understand that you had some standing with these people
But some people who wrote and spoke about you
Seemed like they were only out to put you down at all costs
And when I only heard and read those things
I believed them and did not want to look any further
But never did I hear anything in your defense from the people around me
Who carried your very name and believed in you
Not even a word that I can remember
But I do recall
The Muslim girl in the coffee shop
Couldn't stop adding some puzzling phrase
Every time she mentioned your name while explaining Islam to me
"Do you always have to say that after you say his name ???" I asked her
"What is that ??? Sala waley wasalam ??? What does that mean ???"
And I noticed as I asked more questions to Muslims, and sat with them
It became rare to hear your actual name after that



It sounded so nice, although I don't know what it meant

Rasool Allah
Rasool Allah
Rasool Allah

So after years of worshipping
Anything that came my way
Or anything I thought could give me a good job when I grew up
It was a slow and gradual journey
After canceling out statues, then all the deities
Then the gurus and those claiming god-status
Then the avatars and finally the "Son"
I came to understand the Lord you were speaking about
Rather, He made me understand
And I realized I had been speaking to Him my whole life
Only looking for Him in all the wrong places
Still, no one mentioned you much

And I remember, for my own shahada
And so many other shahadas I witnessed after that
The first line was always easiest to say:
"I bear witness that there is no god but God"
But the second"
And I bear witness that Muhammad is His servant and messenger"
At that time
Was perplexing
Why did I have to say that ???
What does that mean anyways ??? 
Why is it part of my coming to Truth ???
And no one really took time to explain why
Or who you were in a deep way
But my thirst for God
The Real God
Made me accept the one who was bringing His true message

Then, at first, faith was cool
A side thing while I was getting on with the rest of life
The brothers were nice, a lot of biryani and free food at first
My kufi was on soon after 
Patchy chin hairs started growing 
Pants rolled up
Just trying to be a "Good Muslim" 
A trophy in the convert cabinet
And when I chose my name
I wanted Abdullah
And they said
Of course, it should be Muhammad Abdullah
Very well
Muhammad Abdullah I am

And I learned slowly, or at least perceived
That nothing was important besides the Lord
And that La ilaha ill Allah [There is no god but God]
Was a negation of everything else other than Him
That our love for anything but Him was nothing in comparision
Little when compared to love of parents, sister, wife, my own self
And it was hard at first
It was hard to detach my heart from all of creation
Because after being so steeped in it
Even worshipping it for years
To put all of my love for the Lord
And none for anything in creation
Was something that would take time and growing
But I had no complaints

Your name was always, on the list of who a Muslim should love
Officially at 2nd place after God
Then I heard your saying
That no one truly believes till they love you more than parent
Child and all mankind
And I thought
Officially, you’re the # 2 to love
But who actually did that ??? 
At least it didn't show to that extent
I knew people had great love for you 
But perhaps I didn't see it come out all the time

I did see many people
Tripping over themselves to copy you in everything
Everything outward
Your hair 
Or the way you brushed your teeth
Or quoting you when talking about ruling with Islamic laws
Almost making you out to be
Just a beloved political leader
Or founder of a faith
Or a normal person who we look up to and respect
Or simply a demonstrator of external lifestyle patterns
A sort of instruction manual
That you read, and then put aside when the machine is assembled
And the result is a robot
And there were also people
Who knew you had brought the Message
But treated you like you were some sort of a mailman
Good morning, just drop it in my box, please
And if I happen to be on my porch when you passed by
I might just take it in my hand
Say thanks, and you're on your way
Never realizing
That you had lived and died
To send us that Message
That you had cried
Day and Night
So that we could be guided to it
Standing and begging Allah when others were sleeping 
Until your blessed feet
Were swollen
Asking Allah if you could step in and rescue us 
Your Ummah 
On The Day
When our sinful selves
Might otherwise deserve so much punishment for all our sins
You passed away concerned for us 
Mentioning us

My Ummah
My Ummah

And I read some nice things about your life
That no one seemed to want to try to copy 
Much because it was inward
And inward is the hardest aspect to improve
I read such sweet things about what you did 
And what you were like
The humble beginnings you had as an orphan
The way you were so honest and just
Your kindness to widows, slaves and the poor
The way you respected women
The way you forgave your persecutors

And then I fell in love with you
Not quite like I had fallen in love with anyone else before
Not like Ram, Krishna or Jesus
I didn't love you superstitiously 
Because I wanted my worldly wants granted
In fact, you weren't the one to grant those things
But I fell in love with you for who you were
For your ways, your concern, your love for us
Your complete humanness, but your complete excellence
And as I walked around with this love for you
I was always afraid people might think it was too much
But I can't lie
My heart would break every time I heard what you went through

Then I met some people
Who loved you so much
And spoke of you
And their love for you
All the time
And prayed for you
All the time
And wanted to copy your every move
Outwardly, and even more so, inwardly
And they were the best of characters I had ever met
And they cried when your name was mentioned
And rose to their feet when your birth was recounted
And their eyes would fall to the floor
When one of your relatives would enter the room
And they would kiss the hands
Of anyone who wore your sunnah

And at first I was so resistant
Stubbornly refusing to connect what was in my heart
With any outward expression
"Bida'h !!! Shirk !!!!" 
The dogs would bark, chasing their own tails
And I tried to act like I was so against those who showed their love for you
But my eyes would betray me every time
I heard your praises sung
And I couldn't hide myself
No matter how much I refused to sing, or attend the gatherings
Shuttering myself up in my house as the minarets
Would fill the streets with songs about you Thursday nights
I couldn't help but melt just thinking about you for a few minutes

Until I realized
Habeebi Muhammad !!! Peace Be Upon You !!!
Allah asked us for all of our love
To detach our hearts from created things
That we were so steeped in
And when we did detach
Knowing that our hearts were ever wont to return to creation
He told us to leave the love of those small, imperfect things
That can always hurt us, or let us down, or be flawed
And He gave us you
And sent you
As a Mercy to all the worlds
To guide us back to Him
To intercede for us
And He made it part of faith for us to love you
The best of Allah's creation
More than anything or anyone else in His creation
You would never let us down
Nor lead us astray
Rather, by filling our hearts with love for you
We could complete our faith and enhance the love for our Lord
What a mercy, to be able to relate to you and love you
You brought the message of my Lord to me
And took me out of the darkness I was in

Ya Rasool Allah, you're more than just a mailman to me
I won't ever treat you or see you like that
No matter what they say to me
And now that those barriers I had put up
Have been taken down
No, broken down, smashed to pieces
Like a dam that shatters under the pressure of a mighty river
Thoughts of you have flooded my life
And drowned me
Now I don't even know how to go any further towards you
With all this baggage of mistakes in my life
Though I persist in my imperfections
And I am trying to be better
I stop to realize my utter inability
To do this on my own
To reach my Lord through my own weak self
And so I beg Him
Your Lord and my Lord and the Lord of all
Through this love for you that He blessed me with
That is so pure
That goes beyond anything I have ever felt before for anyone else
That I am so utterly powerless to express right now in any way close to
what is felt
That I am ever-wanting to increase
The love that is the light of my life
And the sweetness of my breathing moments
For the sake of my loving His Beloved
That He have mercy on me
And forgive me for all my sins and bring me near to Him

And that He send infinite blessings on you O Messenger of Allah
In this month 
On this day
And every moment to come

And I give thanks to Him for you who showed us how to truly live
And you told us, did you not Ya Rasool Allah
That were we to prostrate for our whole lives
Simply to thank Him for our eyesight
We would not thank Him enough ???

So then how can I even begin
To thank Him enough
For the blessing
Ya Sayyidi ???
No amount of lifetimes would suffice to thank Him for you
I can only ask him to enable me
To spend my life, till the very last moments
Saying, living, and breathing
Salawaat upon you

Sall Allahu 'alaika
Sall Allahu 'alaika
Sall Allahu 'alaika

Peace be upon you

O Final Messenger of God